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Education and Professional Development

Complementary therapies have gained significant recognition and credibility in recent years. According to Lloyd et al. (1993) changes in social and cultural attitudes and beliefs about allopathic medicine coincided with a growth in the popularity of complementary therapies. People are disenchanted with allopathic medicine and a better educated and more discriminating public is disillusioned with experts in general and skeptical about science and positivist knowledge. At the same time, health professionals, particularly nurses and midwives, express disillusionment with the health system, which they describe as impersonal and mechanistic, a system that relies heavily on costly technologies and drugs many with potent side effects. This chapter is an expansive look at the history of healing and the way the woman's role and education have been defined through the centuries. A number of issues and problems for nurses in the contemporary era regarding education in complementary therapies are also highlighted. New directions in complementary therapy education are demonstrated using various examples of innovative subjects and courses becoming available in undergraduate and postgraduate education.

Contents include

  • the history of healing: a brief overview
  • nursing and midwifery: new versions
  • professional development
  • education: new visions
  • undergraduate education
  • postgraduate education.
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Author / Editor Biographies

RN, RM, Dip (Tropical Diseases), DipAppSc (Community Health Nursing), Maternal & Child Health Cert, BAppSc (Advanced Nursing), MN (Education), Therapeutic Touch Level 1 Cert, and FRCNA.
Elaine Duffy has been teaching for 13 years, 11 in the higher education sector. She was a founding member of the Caroline Chisholm School of Nursing at Frankston where nursing programs commenced in 1987. In her position at the Centre for Rural Health, Elaine is involved in research, teaching, supervision and projects. She teaches several subjects by distance education in the Graduate Diploma/Master of Rural Health course, including Aboriginal health and complementary health care. She is a beginning practitioner in therapeutic touch.

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